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Retail businesses are mainly focused around selling its products or services to customers. However, it may not be essentially what customers look for these days. If a customer’s main purpose is to purchase a product, there are many online retailers who are able to offer them exactly what they need without the hassle of physically heading to the stores. So what exactly drives customers to visit a store intentionally?
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It is the experience. The unintelligible connection a customer forms with a brand or product. Often times, buying a product is secondary to the customers. Take a look at Starbucks, they charge a premium for their coffee and yet many still choose them over other places. This is because what Starbucks is essentially selling is not just the coffee, but rather the lifestyle. Most of their stores are furnished with a variety of different table seating to suit the customer’s different needs, providing an environment that enriches the customer’s lifestyle which is basically the experience that customers will take away. So rather than concentrating on sell products to your customers, invest in building the experience around them.
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To do this, try to look at your retail strategy from a different standpoint. Rather than focusing on what you are doing, focus on why you do it instead. For instance, if you are in the grocery business, a couple of elements that you are providing to your customers are the convenience and variety of selection, so highlight that strength. A good case study to look at would be Centra Concept Store in Ireland. They started off as a grocery store and later recrafted their strategy with a goal to become the first place customers think of when it comes to convenient eating. The store now features a grocery section, restaurant, deli, grab and go food and a news stand, providing the ultimate convenience for its customers. The store has changed the way customers interact with grocery stores, making it relevant for them to return throughout the day especially with the addition of the restaurant, grab and go section and news stand to suit their daily requirements, providing them with an experience that is catered towards their lifestyle. (read more about Centra Concept Store)
The traditional methods of running a retail business by solely providing products no longer works in today’s society especially with the ever growing range of e-commerce and multiple bargain stores in the market. Sell your customers an experience that would make them want to return. It is all about forming a bond with your customers on an emotional level, and it is those emotions that make a customer choose your store over any other stores in the market.
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